Recruiting Women to the Manufacturing Sector

A new Women in Manufacturing Group’s survey results show several promising findings for the future of women in the manufacturing sector.


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Women in Manufacturing (WiM) has released new survey results with several promising findings for the future of women in the manufacturing sector. The survey, co-produced with Plante Moran, reviewed more than 870 women who are currently working in the manufacturing industry and young women who are just beginning to consider their career options.

The results found that young women ranked compensation as the most important factor they are seeking in a career, followed closely by work that is interesting and challenging. What is promising about these findings is that more than 80 percent of women in manufacturing today say that their work is interesting and challenging, and half of women in manufacturing say that compensation is the most significant benefit of the sector.

The survey also found that 74 percent of women working in manufacturing say that the sector offers multiple career paths for women and that more than half of women in manufacturing today think that the sector is a leading industry for job growth for women. In addition, 64 percent of women working in manufacturing reported that they would recommend a career in manufacturing to a young woman.

However, despite these high numbers, many young women remain unaware of the opportunities available to them in the manufacturing sector. Less than half of young women believe that manufacturing offers the interesting and challenging work they’re seeking and less than 10 percent of young women placed manufacturing among the top five career fields that they think will offer the most opportunity for young women.

This discrepancy is particularly relevant because today is Manufacturing Day—a day focused on introducing manufacturing to young people and their parents.

“On the whole, these survey results should be seen as a call to action in a space where there is great opportunity,” says Allison Grealis, WiM director. “When we know what young women are looking for in careers, we are in a better position to demonstrate how manufacturing can help them meet their aspirations.  We have long known that women are good for manufacturing; and these survey results go a long way to showing that manufacturing is good for women, too.”

Learn more about the WiM survey and its results:

Survey Fact Sheet

Survey Report